Thousands of UK Prisoners Play Videogames

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Thousands of UK Prisoners Play Videogames

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Thousands and thousands of prisoners in the UK are probably playing Call of Duty right now.

New information has recently come out about the number of gamers in the UK that are also serving time for crime. According to junior justice minister Crispin Blunt, more than one third of the prisoners in England and Wales could potentially be in possession of a videogame console.

Blunt apparently responded to an inquiry on the issue by saying that 36,202 prisoners were on the "enhanced level of the incentives and earned privileges scheme" and eligible to be a behind-bars gamer. To determine exactly how many game consoles were in prisons would "necessitate asking each prisoner individually at disproportionate cost," so there aren't any precise numbers, but Blunt emphasizes that public funds are not currently being used so that prisoners can play Viva Pinata.

Videogames in prisons are a big issue in these regions of the UK, with a 2008 audit revealing that 12,948 consoles were in prisons with 221,726 ($350,000) of the public's tax dollars having been spent on the systems and their software. Government figures say that videogame consoles turn prisons into a "holiday camp" rather than a place that is mean to punish or rehabilitate.

Many prisons don't allow videogames in any form, or even table games like checkers, for prisoners on the best levels of behavior. I don't think that all prisoners should be tortured while incarcerated, because the idea is to rehabilitate most of them, but I know that with a videogame even the most boring of situations can fly by like it's nothing. Should prisoners be allowed to engage in something that, excluding perhaps the most grindy RPG, is pure fun in all of its forms?

Source: Independent

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I remember a letter to the Official Nintendo Magazine emanating from one of Her Majesty's prisons requesting a list of Wii games that could be played on a Gamecube - because they were allowed Gamecube consoles but only Wii games.

Nevertheless, this is still a joke.

Is, perhaps, the idea that convicts spend time "between shankings" just a little insensitive?

I don't believe we'd be happy to talk about playing games "between school massacres", would we?

Well that's not a good idea. I know I would be able to kill after encoutering one of the 97564567886457 bugs in Fable 3.

this is ridiculous, the taxpayer should be paying for MY games |:

They shouldn't be allowed - TVs I can live with as long as it's news channels so they're still aware of what's going on.

Board games should be reserved for only the most serious of offenders, because they really are torture.

Prison doesn't really "rehabilitate" at all, it's more of a very controlled and somewhat dangerous form of life. Having video games only makes it a bit more like the one they had.

The_root_of_all_evil:
Is, perhaps, the idea that convicts spend time "between shankings" just a little insensitive?

I don't believe we'd be happy to talk about playing games "between school massacres", would we?

I second this. Not cool, man.

Woodsey:
They shouldn't be allowed - TVs I can live with as long as it's news channels so they're still aware of what's going on.

Board games should be reserved for only the most serious of offenders, because they really are torture.

oh yeah, make the prisoners watch fox news all day, that wont make them more violent at allllll.

I Think videogames are a good idea in prisons, since they can be used as a very powerful method of control, if they are bad then you take them away. Im not saying to give them a ton of games but a few couldnt hurt.

If i ever end up in prison i would spend all my time playing Riddick.

Just make them play really really bad games haha!

I pay for my games, not theirs. Prisons shouldn't be hotels... but neither should they be hellholes that turns small time criminals into psychopaths unfit for society (looking at some US prions).

Hell no.

They should be forced to play Touhou Labyrinth.

That's rehabilitation >_>.

Ilikemilkshake:
this is ridiculous, the taxpayer should be paying for MY games |:

I KNOW!
excuse me I need to send a letter to Stephen Harper.

In American prisons you get stabbed and raped. In British prisons you get gamerscore. Hehe.

Well, shit that means that they can grind all day long! That is so unfair!

OT: Atleast that something to do then just work out or make someone drop the soap in the showers...

The_root_of_all_evil:
Is, perhaps, the idea that convicts spend time "between shankings" just a little insensitive?

I don't believe we'd be happy to talk about playing games "between school massacres", would we?

Yeah, I only play games AFTER school massacres. Can't let games get in the way of work.

The_root_of_all_evil:
Is, perhaps, the idea that convicts spend time "between shankings" just a little insensitive?

I don't believe we'd be happy to talk about playing games "between school massacres", would we?

This. What the hell man, that's not right.

Besides, do you really think all of these prisoners are in prison for murder or something? There are people in prison for smoking WEED. Yes, that little fun drug. Do you really think they deserve to be stripped of all entertainment because of that?

Go video games in prisons, but only for non-violent offenders who've payed for it by working inside the prison.

Danzaivar:
In American prisons you get stabbed and raped. In British prisons you get gamerscore. Hehe.

This is now a shirt.

I made it so.

The_root_of_all_evil:
Is, perhaps, the idea that convicts spend time "between shankings" just a little insensitive?

I don't believe we'd be happy to talk about playing games "between school massacres", would we?

Yeahhh, you're correct.

Worgen:

Woodsey:
They shouldn't be allowed - TVs I can live with as long as it's news channels so they're still aware of what's going on.

Board games should be reserved for only the most serious of offenders, because they really are torture.

oh yeah, make the prisoners watch fox news all day, that wont make them more violent at allllll.

I was thinking more along the lines of the highly-respected and neutral-as-can-be BBC news. We don't need mass suicides whilst they're forced to endure the idiocy of Glenn Beck (and his fucking chalk board) and Bill O'Reilly.

Prison: a place in which people are physically confined and, usually, deprived of a range of personal freedoms.

I think the UK has missed the point.

The_root_of_all_evil:
Is, perhaps, the idea that convicts spend time "between shankings" just a little insensitive?

I don't believe we'd be happy to talk about playing games "between school massacres", would we?

Come on massacres are so 5 years ago, now we play video games between the genocidal take over of indistinguishable middle eastern countries, get with the times.

I hope people take that as the joke it was meant to be

Mayhap I should go to the UK and commit some felonies.

Just make them play Clash of the Titans, Rogue Warrior, and Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust.

Wait the UK Government is rather contradictory they think videogames encourage violence and crime but they then allow prisoners to have them, in there minds that should be a bad idea.

Tax payers should only be paying for the video games of the unemployed, not convicts as well!

This doesn't seem at all fair but is unsurprising it's a good example of why it is hard to reform criminals: Life is better in Prison for them.

Holiday camps for people with dysfuctional lifestyles etc.

Let us hope that they don't get their hands on this game:

Should provide them only with Dwarf Fortress.

I'm fairly sure it'd completely eradicate drug addiction.

Just make every prisoner complete Two Worlds to 100% before they can be set free. That's worse than dropping the soap.

Tax Dollars?

I think you'll find we don't use Tax Dollars in the UK XD

Prisons are ineffective form of rehabilitation so it doesn't make any difference whatsoever if they play games or not. Without the complete reform of rehabilitation program it doesn't matter what they do.

Having videogames in prisons is a stupid idea, makes it fun and encourages violence, so if they must play something we should make them complete Desert Bus.

Holy_Handgrenade:
Wait the UK Government is rather contradictory they think videogames encourage violence and crime but they then allow prisoners to have them, in there minds that should be a bad idea.

Yeah I was thinking that as I was reading it too. They really need to make their minds up.

Eh. What's the big deal exactly?

Prisons don't serve a useful purpose in terms of rehabilitating criminals anyway.

The only real use they have is keeping nutjobs away from the general population.

That being the case, what the prisoners do with their time shouldn't really be such a big deal.

I mean, considering what it costs to run a prison in the first place, I seriously doubt a couple of game consoles is going to make much difference.

Is there a game called "freedom"? Make the play that.

Or GTA so they get the "YOU'RE BUSTED" message.

Sigh...the point of imprisonment was to PUNISH the criminals. With menial labor and boredom.
Not provide a mandatory room and board for them.

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